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SongLink NewsLink | Music Industry News for January/February 2007

JANUARYFEBRUARY 2007

© Copyright 2007 by SLI - SongLink International
Editor & Publisher: David Stark
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Tel: +44 (0)207 794 2540 - Fax: +44 (0)207 794 7393

EMI Group CEO Eric Nicoli has become executive chairman following the exit of group chairman Alain Levy and vice chairman David Munns. Jean-FranĮois Cecillon takes the newly-created role of chairman and CEO of EMI Music International, and Ian Hanson is named COO EMI Music. In the USA, Nicoli has merged EMI's Capitol and Virgin labels into the Capitol Music Group, with Jason Flom promoted to chairman and CEO, while former Capitol president/CEO Andrew Slater exits. EMI says the formation of the new combined US group is part of the group's plans to deliver £110m ($217m) in annual savings across its business.

PPL and VPL chairman & CEO Fran Nevrkla announced at Midem the directors of PPL who will sit on its Performer Board, following the final completion of the formal mergers of PAMRA (Performing Artists' Media Rights Association) and AURA (The Association of United Recording Artists) into PPL. The four Performer Directors will be Gerald Newson (previously Chairman of PAMRA), Glen Barnham (previously of Equity), Nigel Parker (previously of AURA) and John F. Smith (General Secretary of the MU and current President of FIM, the worldwide body representing all performers). Five 'Performer Guardian' members include Sheila Ferguson, Rick Wakeman and Pete Wishart MP, a former member of Runrig, with two others to be finalised shortly. PPL has announced the first of a number of international deals, including GRAMO (Norway), EFU (Estonia) and AARC (USA).

The EC has begun reviewing the Sony/BMG merger and expects to complete its stage one investigation on March 1. The move came after indie label body Impala complained to the EC about the ongoing damage in the marketplace and excessive delay in re-assessing Sony BMG.

The BPI is to repeat its successful British Music Week promotion in Germany in 2007, also expanding from its Berlin base to Hamburg and Cologne, from April 20-28th. Each of the four major labels in both territories and the most influential independent labels have pledged to showcase acts during the promotion. Partners pledging support include Radio Eins, Intro Magazine, Saturn (Germany's largest music retailer), FKP Scorpio, Trinity Concerts, Eins Live, Peter Reiger Concerts, the British Council and the British Embassy.

The indie record sector has launched Merlin, a sister organisation to WIN (World Independent Network), as a one-stop licensing shop for Web 2.0 and emerging media. CEO is Charles Caldas, former CEO, Shock Entertainment Group (Australia's largest indie distributor).

AIM Independent Sessions has been set up to showcase the UK's most exciting independently-brewed music independent music. The inaugural event takes place on Monday 19th February in association with eMusic at the Cobden Club in west London, featuring Amp Fiddler, Iain Archer (ex Snow Patrol), Findlay Brown and French singer-songwriter Klima.

The PRS Foundation for New Music will award up to £1.25m in 2007 to support new British music. Since March 2000 it has supported over 2500 new music initiatives with a total of £9.5 million. There are 18 opportunities this year to apply for grants at: www.prsfoundation.co.uk.

BMG Music Publishing and India's leading music publisher Deep Emotions have entered into a joint venture agreement that will give much-needed support to songwriters in India. Through the deal, BMG and Deep Emotions will jointly sign local lyricists and composers to music publishing agreements and provide them with creative, financial, promotional, administrative and legal support.

EMI Music Publishing has announced the launch of a new Producer Management division, headed by Anna Carpenter as General Manager, reporting to MD Guy Moot. She moves from Native Management.

Bug Music has signed a co-publishing and admin deal with Hollywood actor/musician Jamie Foxx, who is currently co-starring in Dreamgirls.

Popkomm is inviting applications from bands wanting to showcase to forward digital files of their music to www.popkomm.com/festival, from February 15th. Sonicbids is handling the online processing of all applications. Popkomm takes place in Berlin from September 19-21st.

CISAC (International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers) has announced a Copyright Summit to be held in Brussels (Belgium) on May 30 and 31 at the Sheraton Hotel & Tower. Speakers willinclude Charles Aznavour; film director Michael Apted; UK artist/writer Billy Bragg; US producer/writer Glen Ballard; EMI Music Publishing president Roger Faxon; EMI Music's Jean-Franáois Cècillon, and Tim Renner of Motor FM (Germany). www.cisac.org.

Atlantic Records (UK) has teamed up with Saatchi & Saatchi to develop entertainment and branded content properties. The partnership will create innovative music-related properties that will deliver new multi-platform communication outlets for brands and artists.

Townhouse Studios, in co-operation with the Sanctuary Group, has reopened under the stewardship of producer Al Stone, who has updated all the control rooms and the studio's flagship mastering operation.

Mardi Caught has joined Sony's Columbia label group in London as general manager, joining from MTV Networks UK & Ireland where she was VP, Talent and Music. She reports to MD Mike Smith.

Songwriter Cathy Dennis was named as Woman Of The Year at the annual ceremony at London's InterContinental Hotel last December, held in aid of Nordoff Robbins Music Therapy. Other winners were Mean Fiddler communications manager Tania Harrison (Accolade Award), studio manager Ros Earls (Outstanding Achievement) and T4's youth and music commissioning editor Cath Lovesey (Special Achievement).

Tina Turner is recording a comeback album for Capitol, and has been working on tracks with Guy Chambers. Release is expected later this year, with tour dates also likely to be announced.

Celine Dion's Las Vegas concert series 'A New Day' will close on December 15 after a five-year run. Nearly 2.5 million people have seen the show at the Colosseum, a $95 million custom-built theatre. The singer is currently working on a new album for Sony BMG.

Alison Moyet has signed to John Williams' label W14 Music (Universal), with a new album expected next summer. The album will coincide with the 25th anniversary of Moyet's career, which began as one half of Yazoo. Williams A&R'd her last two albums at Sanctuary.

Digital distributor The Orchard will exclusively market Sanctuary's recorded music and music video catalogue for the world outside the UK and North America, with initial offerings from the Trojan catalogue, The Cooper Temple Clause, Idlewild, The Fall, Dolores O'Riordan, and Motorhead, amongst many others. The Orchard has also entered into a licensing agreement with Pandora Media, making its full label catalogue available for inclusion in the Music Genome Project, streaming audio to listeners of Pandora's discovery radio service in the UK.

Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark are reforming and also working with the London Philharmonic Orchestra for a tour starting in the autumn of 2008. The concerts across Europe and the US will see the LPO playing the Energy Suite installation music with giant screens carrying projections of power station images. On April 30 Virgin/EMI release a double-pack CD and DVD of the digitally remastered 1981 album OMD Live at the Drury Lane Theatre.

Former Warner/Chappell and MPL VP Alan Tepper is now CEO of newly-formed Anthem Music & Media Group, with offices in New York and Los Angeles, the latter headed by CEO Steve Smith. The company already has 4,000 songs, having purchased the Bicycle Music Co., whose co-president Jon Rosner becomes Creative VP at Anthem. He also brings the representation of Neil Diamond's Diamondsongs to the new company, while the Anthem catalogue also includes works by Foghat, Ice Cube and Dave Frishberg among others.

Brad Cotter has signed as main artist for Adobe Road Records, a new Nashville-based label headed by songwriter/producer Gary Cotton.

Nominees for this year's CMA Global Country Artist Award include: Tom Astor (Germany), Calaisa (Sweden), Rodrigo Haddad (Brazil), Adam Harvey (Australia), Corb Lund (Canada), Melinda Schneider (Australia), Rachael Warwick (UK) and Michelle Wright (Canada). Candidates are chosen from artists nominated by CMA's international membership. The winner will receive the award at the 2007 CMA Music Festival held in Nashville from June 7-10th.

RIP: The Godfather of Soul James Brown (73), from pneumonia in Atlanta, Georgia... Former EMI producer and A&R manager Walter 'Wally' Ridley (93)... Pedal steel guitarist 'Sneaky' Pete Kleinow of the Flying Burrito Brothers (72)... UK producer Colin Thurston... jazz musicians Michael Brecker (56) and Alice Coltrane (69)... 'Dallas' and 'Sex And The City' composer Harvey Cohen (55)... Mamas & Papas founder member Denny Doherty (66).

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